How to specify a die-cut

macaddict23

macrumors 6502
Original poster
Jun 20, 2006
382
0
MacVille, USA
Hello. I'm designing a Presentation Folder in Illustrator, and I was wondering how one would specify the CD and Business Card slit. Thanks.
 

decksnap

macrumors 68040
Apr 11, 2003
3,070
70
I usually design it as line art in illustrator and place it into the Quark file. I use straight magenta so it's obvious to the printer.

If it's not obvious enough, put a text box outside of the document area that says 'magenta lines - Die cut only'.
 

Wippet

macrumors newbie
Sep 16, 2006
16
0
Hello. I'm designing a Presentation Folder in Illustrator, and I was wondering how one would specify the CD and Business Card slit. Thanks.

Draw where you would like the cuts to be, or get a cutter made by a CAD operator. Putting the cutter on another layer is helpful, just make sure its at the top. Colour the cutter in a spot colour and name it "CUTTER" "KNIFE" ect and set it to overprint in the attributes menu in illustrator.

If you are also ripping the file make sure you set the cutter colour to overprint there also.
 

decksnap

macrumors 68040
Apr 11, 2003
3,070
70
The above (wippet) is really not necessary. Just make it obvious which lines are the die lines.
 

PixelFactory

macrumors regular
Jun 6, 2003
233
0
Chicago
My current way is to make a custom spot color and name it "Die Cut DO NOT PRINT" and use that for the die lines. This makes sure that it will be seen as a separate printer color and not integrate into 4 color artwork like a magenta line would.
 

RubberChicken

macrumors regular
Sep 16, 2003
113
1
Australia
Wippet and PixelFactory are spot on

1. Unless you are confident in paper engineering get a dieline file from your printer - if it does not work then it's their fault.

2. Make it a spot colour and name it dieline and top layer.

3. MUST make it overprinting.
 

Blue Velvet

Moderator emeritus
Jul 4, 2004
21,922
168
Best not to use a registration colour; it runs across all plates. Best to use a spot colour... Pantone Orange (021C) is my favourite for this work usually, as I don't use a lot of orange in most daily work and it's clearly visible on screen. I use a 0.3pt stroke.

And yeah, now that Quark and InDesign have layers, I always put it on a seperate layer so it can locked and made invisible when working on the artwork itself.
 

oscuh

macrumors 6502
Apr 27, 2007
314
0
Michigan
I always create my die lines as a Reddish spot color named #DIE so it seps out easily.

Funny how we all develop our own little methods :D

Oh, and their are gobs of templates out there already for these, so I hope you're not trying to build one from scratch.
 

Abraxsis

macrumors 6502
Sep 23, 2003
415
0
Kentucky
I'm an art director and head designer at a toy company. I deal with printers on a daily basis.

IMO magenta is becoming the "traditional" color for printers. When I have a die line created it always comes in that color from the printers, so I use the same when I create something myself. Of the 5 print companies I use, and the countless factories that print our hang tags, they all prefer magenta. The only time I would suggest straying from this would be if your product is loaded with magenta already, then use another color that "doesn't belong."

I also agree with the other person who stated that if you weren't familiar with paper engineering to have the printer make you a die line. Ive been doing my job for awhile now and even I still have a die maker do my box lines, I just don't trust myself, lol.
 

AlexisV

macrumors 68000
Mar 12, 2007
1,603
95
Manchester, UK
Yep, I'd stick with magenta.

Create in in Illustrator - you'll have get accurate with those millimetres - and then paste it on top of your artwork in Quark/Indesign. That way you'll be able to check it's spot on accurate.

I then just create a new blank page at the end of the document an place the cutter on that.

Solid lines for cuts, dashed lines for folds by the way.

Have you ever seen a cutter in the flesh? They're intricate products and one of the few things that aren't that mechanised and take some skill to produce.
 

PixelFactory

macrumors regular
Jun 6, 2003
233
0
Chicago
Why does the color need to Overprint?
It will make sure your die cut won't knock out your artwork if prepress misses it. As you can see, we all have different ways to specify die cuts. Best to talk to your printer and find out how they would like you to set up your file.